This week's Small Group Guide is composed of questions from this week's GPS Guide. The questions relate to the Scripture for that particular day. You can download the full week's GPS as a printable document for the context of each question below (in the printable version, the recommended small group questions are marked with a special bullet point).
Jesus quoted from (and adapted) Isaiah 61:1-3 in the synagogue in Nazareth to define his mission. “To preach good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind, to liberate the oppressed, and to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” has a nice poetic ring. What can you do each day to live into the meaning of those words in life’s gritty, unpoetic, day-to-day realities?
Today, as we know more about leprosy and other skin diseases, people don’t wear signs that say “unclean.” But social shunning still goes on in 2018, based on race, age, gender, socio-economic or educational level, religion, sexual orientation, disability, and even personal quirks, political beliefs, or looks. Have others ever shunned you? Have you ever shunned someone else? How is God asking you to live up to Jesus' example in touching the leper today?
Jesus' command—“Go, show yourself to the priests” (verse 14)—was the way to verify people’s healing. But his command preceded the actual cleansing. It seems that when they acted on Jesus' word, they opened the way for his power to flow. In what ways does this speak to you? In what part of life might you need to act on God’s wishes, rather than waiting for him to make everything right before you act?
Jesus taught that acting generously is the natural and desired result of feeling gratitude. How do you show your gratitude for your teachers and mentors? Do you thank them by carrying on their teachings? How do you show your gratitude for Jesus’ teachings? Do you thank Him by carrying on his ministry of loving and healing His children?
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